Are the creative industries as innovative as we think?

Views on creativity have changed over the years, with concepts like the creative class and creative workers becoming significant areas of focus for the economic development field. Municipalities across North America now compete with one another to attract creative industries to generate innovation and economic growth. A recent working paper(and upcoming report) from the United Kingdom, however, may have municipalities rethinking their strategies around creative industries.

The results of the study suggest that creative industries may not be as innovative as expected and, echoing Richard Florida, that instead creative workers appear to be a more important driver of innovation and economic growth. The study found that urban creative industries in the U.K. were not more or less innovative than firms in other sectors. Instead the study found that creative workers in all industries, not just creative ones, were essential in spreading innovative processes and products around the economy.

While the research is focused on the U.K., it does raise some important questions for communities looking to leverage creativity in their economic development activities on this side of the pond. Take a look at the white paper for more insight or check out this World Economic Forum summary for a quick overview of the report.

This post originally appeared in TINAN 50Subscribe to TINAN to get the latest economic development news and resources.